Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ouch: Back me up Scotty!

While I can't be transported back to the moment, I did it — I assure you I learned a valuable lesson.

I need a back up plan for my email and my digital files.

Last week, I attempted to clean out my email account files and deleted 40 percent of the capacity in the account.
I eliminated almost all of my story ideas, titles, thoughts, etc.
that I had emailed to myself over the last two years. 

In the days of home phones, I used to call my voice mail and leave notes to myself to transcribe later.

With an iPhone, I email notes to myself.

Since my son arrived, I've sent hundreds of emails to myself with notes on story openings, titles and outlines. I lost all this, plus notes about things that my son did during those early days when sleep deprivation zapped all my brain cells.

I didn't cry. I didn't panic. Instead, I got busy. That mobile cloud that I have — well, I put it to use and backed up my current computer files. This task had been on my "to do" list for weeks. I found a second email account to send items to as a back up to my main account and to keep it out of my clumsy reach.

I sought help from  other writers at the Writer Unboxed group on Facebook. Many were kind to share their techniques on saving information such as Word files, notes on cell phones, a notebook, etc. And, how those files are backed up using thumb drives, hard drives, clouds, email accounts, friends and family, etc.

The whole episode made me give a brief moment of silence for the ideas I lost. Some I will be able to create, but others will be lost forever. I guess that just leaves more room for new ideas.

Whether it's a new idea or an old one, I promise I will back it up somewhere — in the new small notebook that will fit in the diaper bag, at the new email address or on my computer or iPhone.


  1. So sorry that happened! I'm still trying to figure out how to use Dropbox, MobileMe, etc. to take care of this automatically from now on, but it's a big learning curve.

    Good old-fashioned notebooks start to look better, huh?

  2. I bought a new notebook last week. I just heard about this Dropbox - it's on my to be investigated list.

  3. That must've stunk! It made me think of my ideas...probably yours are better than mine, but only about 1/1000th of my ideas are any good. :) Sounds like you've got a plan for the future.

  4. Yes, Anita it stunk. Some of my ideas did too. Ah, second chances.

  5. Have you looked in the Deleted Items folder? Maybe some of your stuff can be brought back?

    Cold As Heaven


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